The North Dakota. on my family farm with my parents, Jim and Sheryl Turbiville.

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1 Sheep The North Dakota Industry Newsletter Publication No. 63 A joint publication brought to you by the North Dakota Lamb and Wool Producers Association and the NDSU Extension Service NDLWPA Director s Comments Misty Steeke Southwest Director I am hoping that everyone is getting all of his or her fall work done with our extended nice weather. I would like to take a moment and introduce myself. I have been a member of the NDLWPA for the past five years and have been involved in the sheep industry my entire life. My name is Misty Steeke and our family operation is located southwest of Rhame. My husband, Trevor; my kids, Colbey (14), Abbi (11), Lilli (7) and Calvin (4); and I live Fall 2011 Issue NDLWPA Director s Comments...1 Editor s Comments...1 Do I Need to Pregnancy Check My Ewes?...2 Sheep Producers Tour...3 Starter Flock Recipient Profi le...4 NDSU Data Management Program...4 Ewe Vaccination Programs...5 NDLWPA Board Meeting Minutes...5 SARE Grants Available...7 NDLWPA 4th Annual Lamb Cook-off...7 Skip the Turkey. Enjoy Lamb for Thanksgiving!...8 Announcements...8 Events...8 Fall Management Tips...8 Sheep Management Tools Available...9 NDLWPA Lamb Cook-off Entry Form...10 on my family farm with my parents, Jim and Sheryl Turbiville. I actually have an off-the-farm job teaching Ag Ed/FFA in Scranton and spend my evenings and weekends catching up. Our sheep operation is a family program. Back when I was younger, my family ran 600 ewes and fed out the lambs. But slowly, the farm took on more cows and fewer sheep. Currently we run 250 head of ewes consisting of mainly Hampshires. We also have a mixture of Suffolk X Hampshires, Dorsets and commercial ewes. We sell registered rams and commercial lambs to 4-H and FFA members for lamb projects. Both Colbey and Abbi have been recipients of the starter flock program and take many of our lambs to state and county fairs. Each of the kids has invested in his or her own ewes and has goals of staying in this wonderful industry. During lambing and breeding season, everyone takes responsibility for feeding and management; we all make decisions. Even Calvin and Lilli get their turn at carrying water buckets and feeding grain to the jugs during lambing. I am a true advocate for the sheep industry! I believe that it is an industry that becomes a passion for anyone involved. I look forward to seeing everyone at the NDLWPA convention in December and wish everyone success in his or her sheep operation. Editor s Comments By Reid Redden, Sheep Specialist NDSU Extension Service Producing another sheep industry newsletter when the sheep industry is doing so well gives me great pleasure. Not much has changes since the last newsletter. Lamb and wool prices still are strong, and Texas and New Mexico still are experiencing severe drought. I would encourage you to look at that area to find ewes for your own expansion. If not, I am afraid those ewes will enter the food chain, and that is the last thing the sheep industry needs. Sheep sale listing and leasing options can be found on the American Sheep Industry s website at Both the Jamestown and Hettinger sales were well-attended, and the rams sold for a fair price. In my opinion, the most encouraging event at both sales was the strong interest in ewe lambs and yearlings. I hope this is sign that our state s ewe population is on the rise. For those who attended, I encourage you to contact me or sale committee members to provide comments and suggestions for future sales. Starter flock applications were reviewed and accepted at the September board meeting. Chris Schauer and I hosted a starter flock 1

2 school for flock recipients in Hettinger. Working with youth so excited and enthusiastic about their flocks is refreshing. If you have an opportunity, please lend them some encouragement and support. We definitely need new sheep producers to enter into the business to fill the void left by a large group of shepherds who have retired. Do I Need to Pregnancy Check My Ewes? By Reid Redden, Sheep Specialist NDSU Extension Service So often I hear the comment, I know that I should pregnancy check my ewes, but I never have the time and nobody in my area can provide the service. I agree that having your ewes scanned for pregnancy can be difficult, but it is a management practice that can improve the efficiency of your operation. Contact your veterinarian and schedule this event. If your veterinarian does not provide these services, ask him or her to provide a reference and encourage him or her to contact me. We intend to host an ultrasound clinic at NDSU in the near future. Why should I ultrasound my flock? Increase the number of lambs marketed: Expose your ewe lambs (7 to 12 months of age) to a ram for 30 days. Keep all the ewes that were determined to be pregnant and market the remaining ewe lambs. They still will bring lamb prices. Your ewes that bred as ewe lambs also will be more fertile in their lifetime. This may not be a good practice for extensively managed ewes, however. Decrease lambing labor: Scan your entire ewe flock and sort them into groups by the number of offspring. Open ewes can be marketed or moved out of lambing facilities. Single and twin-bearing ewes can be sorted and placed in separate drop pens. Shepherds may choose not to jug these ewes and lambs from the single pen or lamb the ewes away from the barn without assistance, whereas, twin- and triplet-bearing ewes can be lambed in drop pens that are checked more often and jugged immediately after lambing. This can reduce labor without significantly affecting the lamb survival rate. Increase the prolificacy of the ewe flock: Most range lambing flocks struggle to select highly prolific replacements because the parity of lambs is not known. However, if ewes are scanned and sorted into different lambing pastures, then the selection of replacements from the twinning pasture will increase the flock prolificacy. Reduce ewe feed costs: Removing ewes that are open is the obvious method; however, we often fail to remember that we can save roughly Starter Flock Recipients Left to right: Cade Koenig, Cole Helmers, Cordell Volson, Jess Sanders, Codee Gilbertson, Callie Loftsgard, Jessi Lagein, Jill Lagein, Madeline Solemsaas and Abbi Steeke 2

3 Sheep Producers Tour NDSU Extension is hosting a tour of sheep operations in South Dakota, Nebraska and Iowa. Join us on our trip to visit some state-of-the-art sheep facilities and meet some leaders of the sheep business in the north-central region of the U.S. You are guaranteed to learn new and different methods of making a living in the sheep business. Call (701) or by Oct. 14 to reserve your spot. A registration fee of $50 will cover the cost of transportation. 25 percent on winter feed costs by sorting single and twin lambing ewes or early and late lambing ewes. Feed requirements increase by 25 percent during the last 45 days of gestation, and ewes caring twins require 25 percent more feed than ewes with singles. Feeding ewes appropriately not only reduces feed costs but increases ewe health. When should I have my ewes scanned? Pregnancy can be determined in the ewe from 45 days after breeding until lambing. The pregnancy rate can be detected in the ewe from 45 to 90 days postconception. After 90 days, detection of multiple lambs is difficult. The most optimum time to scan your ewes is 90 days prior to the start of lambing. However, many late pregnancies will be missed if the ram is left for more than a 34-day breeding season. What other methods are used to determine pregnancy? BioTracking: This is a company that offers pregnancy tests for sheep. These tests can detect 30-day and older pregnancies with a simple blood sample. We are conducting experiments with this company to develop a test to predict pregnancy rates. Udder palpation (bagging): Ewes usually develop a bag around two weeks prior to lambing. Shepherds can bag ewes on a weekly basis to sort out those that are closest to lambing. Tentative stops: Buskohl Lamb Feedlot, Wyndmere, N.D. David Buskohl will provide a tour of his lamb-finishing facilities and discuss his lamb-feeding system. South Dakota State University Sheep Unit, Brookings, S.D. Jeff Held will provide a tour of the SDSU sheep barn and discuss topics of research at SDSU. Dakota Lamb, Hurley, S.D. Bill Aeschilmann will provide a tour of his custom lamb feed yard and discuss his lamb marketing business. U.S. Meat Animal Research Center, Clay Center, Neb. Kreg Leymaster will provide an educational seminar on commercial sheep breeding systems and lead a tour of the research center. Iron Horse Farms, Harlan, Iowa Tom Schechinger will provide a tour of his 100 percent confinement sheep operation. 3

4 Colbey Steeke, Rhame, N.D. Starter Flock Recipient Profile What sparked your interest in this program? The starter flock program caught my attention when I found out about the success of the former recipients. I was interested in it when I found out that I could receive 10 Rambouillet ewes, which would add diversity to my flock. I also own 19 registered Hampshire ewes and 21 club sheep. My 10 ewes also complement our ranch s cattle grazing system. What do you enjoy the most about your flock? The thing I most enjoy about my flock is the ewes mothering ability and the ease of lambing the ewes out and not worrying about the lambs when they were moved out to the big pen. I also enjoy the fact that the lambs took off growing right after birth. What is the most exciting event that has occurred with your flock? The most memorable experience with my ewes is the fact that I sold my 11 lambs for $2.27 at 81 pounds. I will remember that price for the rest of my life. I will also remember the fact of the lambs getting right up and going right after birth. What would you tell a youngster interested in the sheep business? I would tell a youngster wanting to get into the sheep business that the industry has its ups and downs, but just remember that in the end, you will end out on top if you do the best you can with your sheep. I would also say be the best shepherd you could possibly be and good things will happen. NDSU Data Management Program By Reid Redden, Sheep Specialist NDSU Extension Service Compared with other livestock industries, the sheep industry has not adopted performance data collection practices. In the late 1980s, the National Sheep Improvement Program (NSIP) was created to assist breed associations and producers in collecting and analyzing performance data. This program generated genetic predictors for individual animals based on different commercially important traits. Only a couple of sheep breeds are using this technology. If you are interested in enrolling in NSIP, visit its website at Production traits, such as weaning weight, yearling weight, litter size and fleece weight, must be collected from flocks before any genetic predictors can be generated. However, production records do not have to be generated on expected progeny differences/estimated breeding values for progress to be made. On the contrary, flock production data is very useful. I encourage all producers to collect this information and use it to make breeding decisions, even if you have no intention of enrolling in NSIP. To support producers who want to become more proactive in data collection and analysis, we will be offering a program that helps shepherds manage production data and interpret the data to make improvements in their flock. This program will: Provide shepherds with materials to assist in the collection and submission of performance data Show shepherds how to receive and process data to make adjustments for lamb age, ewe age, sex and parity Help shepherds produce yearly performance reports that include rankings of lambs, ewes and rams Teach shepherds how to create electronic storage files to save and add new data to breeding stock Provide assistance in collection of postweaning weight, rib-eye area and backfat data If you are interested in this program, please contact me at (701) or This program will be provided free of charge for those who enroll in

5 Ewe Vaccination Programs By Charlie Stoltenow, Veterinarian NDSU Extension Service Vaccination programs for sheep are different than for any other livestock. Sheep need relatively few vaccines to maintain good health. But remember that vaccines cannot completely prevent disease; they only can help prevent disease. The environment we provide for our sheep is just as or more important. Always work with your local veterinarian to design a vaccination program that fits into your management and the diseases present in your geographical area. Every sheep absolutely should be vaccinated for Clostridial diseases. At a minimum, they should be vaccinated for Clostridium perfringens types C and D, and Clostridium tetani. Ewes should be vaccinated approximately 30 days before lambing. Lambs from vaccinated ewes should be vaccinated at 1 month of age and revaccinated at 2 months of age. Lambs from unvaccinated ewes should be vaccinated at 1 week of age and then revaccinated at 1 and 2 months of age. In flocks with known abortion problems, pregnant ewes and ewe lambs should be vaccinated for Chlamydia and/or Campylobacter (Vibriosis). Other diseases for which vaccinations have been beneficial include Caseous Lymphadenitis, sore mouth (pox) and Mannheimia (Pasteurella). Caseous lymphadenitis (NDSU publication AS-1353) is caused by Corynebacterium pseudotuberculosis. The vaccine technically is a killed bacterin and should be administered only to nonpregnant animals more than 8 weeks of age. The sore mouth vaccine is a live virus vaccine and can infect people. Protective gloves should be worn when handling sore mouth vaccine. Vaccinating for Mannheimia haemolytica may be beneficial. This vaccine technically is a killed bacterin and should be administered to lambs 30 days before weaning and at weaning to aid in the prevention of pneumonia. As always, work with a veterinarian to set up a vaccination program that works for you and your sheep. NDLWPA Board Meeting Minutes Submitted by: Rick Schmidt, NDLWPA Secretary August 5, 2011 The North Dakota Lamb and Wool Producer meeting was called to order by chair Wyman Scheetz on August 5, 6:00 p.m. at the Pizza Ranch in Jamestown. The following members were present: Nathan Robbins, Misty Steeke, Mark Sheppard, Reid Redden, Todd Sears, Paul Klose, Julie Mangnall, Wyman Scheetz, Brad Gilbertson, Bob Hewson, and Rick Schmidt. There were several guests present as well. The Secretary s report was ed and handed out. Motion by Todd to approve, second by Reid. Motion carried. The Treasurer s report was presented. Balance showed $7, in checking and $30, in savings. Motion by Nathan to approve, second by Bob. Motion carried. Sale progress: Tradewind magazine inquired about having NDLWPA placing an ad. The board agreed to purchase an ad this year. The preliminary numbers for the Hettinger ram sale are 142 rams. The sale will be held on September 14, Starter Flock update: There are about 20 applicants for the starter flock program. A special meeting was set up for August 25, 2011 to be held at the Seven Seas in Mandan beginning at 12:00 noon to review applicants. Phil Mastrangelo of Wildlife services will attend the next NDLWPA meeting to discuss their program s funding. Ag Foundation Exhibit: The North Dakota Agriculture Foundation has a traveling booth that will be displayed at each county fair if possible. The NDLWPA board had consensus to donate $ for the booth. The bumper stickers were on display. The total bill was $ for the stickers. Mark reported there is $2,769 in the Wool Outreach fund that needs to be utilized by September 1. The following expenses will be paid from the Wool Outreach fund: $100 for the Ag Foundation booth, Nathan moved to give $ to the Hand Spinners Conference, second by Brad. $ will be spent to purchase Sheep Production Guides for the 10 youth who received the perpetual starter flocks last year. $1,250 will be to support the shearing school in Hettinger. A request from Ransom County 4-H to assist with travel expenses to National Judging contest was denied. Motion by Brad to renew the membership to the Fur Takers, second by Misty. Motion carried. 5

6 The North Dakota Lamb and Wool Producer Association will ask the North Dakota Board of Animal Health to review the B-Ovis testing requirements to determine if the tests are still valid and/or if there should be updates made to the testing program. Motion by Julie, second by Misty. Motion carried. Reid reported the Howard Wyman Leadership program held in Sioux Falls was very educational and would recommend it to any sheep producers thinking of attending. It will be held in Philadelphia next year. Reid asked for feedback on the website. Some comments were to add pictures and feature stories. Anyone who would like to add information to the website should contact Reid. The NDLWPA Facebook is up and running. Reid asked if there was interest in putting together a golf team to support the ND 4-H Foundation tournament at Oxbow. If interested contact Reid. BBQ Boot Camp has been a great promotion for American Lamb. The NDLWPA is getting a lot for our investment. The NDLWPA would like to congratulate the NDSU Faculty on receiving National Honors. Wyman and Ann will work on the Lamb Cook Off for the Convention. Rick updated the board on the direction of the Quality Assurance Program. Codee Gilbertson had tickets for the UJSSA Raffle available. Meeting was adjourned. August 25, 2011 The North Dakota Lamb and Wool Producers meeting was called to order by Chair Wyman Scheetz at the Seven Seas in Mandan on August 25, 2011 at 12:00 noon. Members present were Bob Hewson, Luke Lillehaugen, Matt Benz, Brad Gilbertson, Lyle Warner, Wyman Scheetz, Dave Pearson and Rick Schmidt. Also present was Dr. Delray Martin-Heart River Vet Clinic and Dr. Beth Carlson-North Dakota State Veterinary office. Rick read the minutes of the August 5 meeting. Motion by Luke to approve, second by Lyle, motion carried. Mark faxed the report to Rick and was gone through. Balances showed $8, in checking and $30, in savings. The Jamestown sale had gross receipts of $38, and a net income of $2, Bob moved to approve the Treasurer s report, second by Lyle, motion carried. Dr. Delray Martin was present to address the NDLWPA questions on Ultrasound testing of sheep. Currently out-of-state or unlicensed individuals are not to be Ultrasound testing sheep, but very few licensed practitioners in the state provide the service. Dr. Martin asked to look at how other states handle the practice. Dr. Beth Carlson-North Dakota Assistant State Veterinarian, was present to answer questions on the B-Ovis testing requirements. Currently, 9 states require tests for importation. Motion by Matt to have the Secretary send a letter to the North Dakota Board of Animal Health requesting they develop a protocol to allow B-Ovis test pending rams available for importation into North Dakota, second by Brad, motion carried. Dr. Carlson informed the board there is $15,000 of Surveillance Funds available for the next 3 years. These funds can be used for genotyping and approved practices. Hettinger Ram Sale is expecting 125 rams after some cancellations. The board is planning to have around 200 attend the noon meal. Convention was discussed. Some topics to have a presenter on were Graduate Students reports/presentations, Wool presentation (maybe someone from Center of the Nation), buying old or used rams, and a quest who has traveled abroad. Brad moved to pay Burdell Johnson $ for auctioneering the Jamestown Sale and send a thank you letter, second by Matt, motion carried. The board reviewed the starter flock applications. The following youth were selected to receive 10 head of sheep for the 2011: Madeline Solemsaas, Jess Sanders, Jill Lagein, Jessie Lagein, Codee Gilbertson, Cole Helmers, Cade Koenig, Callie Loftsgard, Abigail Steeke, and Cordell Volson. 6

7 SARE Grants Available The 2011 North Central Region Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education (NCR-SARE) program is seeking applicants for its Farmer Rancher grants. Farmers and ranchers in the north-central region are invited to submit grant proposals to explore sustainable agriculture solutions to problems on the farm or ranch. Proposals should show how farmers and ranchers plan to use their own innovative ideas to explore sustainable agriculture options and how they will share project results. Sustainable agriculture is good for the environment, profitable and socially responsible. Projects should emphasize research or education/demonstration. New this year, the program is offering three types of competitive grants: individual grants ($7,500 maximum), partner grants for two farmers/ ranchers from separate operations who are working together ($15,000 maximum) and group grants for three or more farmers/ranchers from separate operations who are working together ($22,500 maximum). NCR-SARE expects to fund about 45 projects in the 12-state north-central region with this round of grants. Interested applicants can find the call for proposals, as well as useful information for completing a proposal, at Proposals are due on Friday, Dec. 2, 2011, at 4:30 p.m. at the NCR-SARE office in Jefferson City, Mo. NDLWPA 4th Annual Lamb Cook-off The fourth annual North Dakota Lamb and Wool Producers Association s fourth annual lamb cook-off will be Dec. 2, 2011, at the Seven Seas Hotel in Mandan, N.D. Official Rules The contest is open to anyone. Contestants may enter more than one dish. Entry forms are available online at or on the Lamb Cook-off sponsored by NDLWPA Facebook page. Criteria and Ingredients The recipe must use lamb; any cut of lamb is acceptable. Judging will be based on taste (50 percent), appearance (25 percent) and how well lamb is featured (25 percent). Side dishes are allowed but not necessary. The presentation of the lamb entry will be part of the appearance portion of the judging. People s Choice Contest If you wish to participate in the People s Choice contest, your entry should be ready at approximately 8 p.m. and be large enough for 15 servings. You may participate in the People s Choice contest even if you do not enter the lamb cook-off. This contest is mainly for fun, but we will recognize the first- and second-place winners with prizes. Recipe Bring one copy of your recipe to be given to the judges and the NDLWPA. Categories First and second place will be awarded in each of the following categories: Adult: Contestants must be a minimum of 22 years of age. Youth: This category is for anyone 21 years of age and under. The youth should do the majority of the preparation and cooking of the entry. Date and Time Judging will take place on Friday, Dec. 2, starting at 5 p.m. You will be advised what time (within 15 minutes) your entry will be judged after Nov. 25 when we know how many entries we have. Entries Due Nov.25, 2011 Your entry must include what type of cooking method you will be using. The Seven Seas has limited resources for cooking. No stoves or ovens are available. You may prepare your recipe ahead of time and bring it in or bring your own cooking appliance. Electricity for slow cookers, etc., will be made available. Let us know if you want to barbecue outside (bring your own grill). The decisions of the judges will be final. Winners and contestants recipes, photos and names may be used in promotional materials for the NDLWPA. Lamb cook-off entry form appears on the back page of this newsletter 7

8 Announcements The North Dakota Lamb and Wool Producers Association and Lamb Cook-off are on Facebook. Friend them! NDSU will be hosting webinars starting this fall/winter. Put in your topic requests. Skip the Turkey. Enjoy Lamb for Thanksgiving! 1 Tbsp. soy sauce 1 Tbsp. olive oil 1 clove garlic, crushed 1 tsp. pepper ½ tsp. ground ginger 1 whole bay leaf, crushed ½ tsp. dried thyme ½ tsp. dried sage ½ tsp. dried marjoram 6 to 9 pounds American Lamb leg, bone-in Preparation time: 5 minutes Cook time: 2 to 3 hours Celebration Leg of Lamb In small bowl, mix together soy sauce, oil, garlic, pepper, ginger, bay leaf, thyme, sage and marjoram. Place lamb on rack in roasting pan. With sharp knife, make frequent slits in surface of lamb. Move knife from side to side to enlarge pockets. Rub herb mixture into each slit. Rub any remaining mixture over roast. Roast in 325 F oven for 20 to 25 minutes per pound or until meat thermometer registers 145 F for medium rare, 160 F for medium or 170 F for well done. Remove roast from oven, cover and let stand 10 minutes. Internal temperature will rise approximately 10 degrees. Pan drippings can be used in gravy or skimmed and served as au jus. Events Northeast Wyoming Sheep Symposium Gillette, Wyo., Oct 20 Shepherds Tour Oct Sheep Shearing and Wool Classing School Hettinger, N.D., Nov Lamb Cook-off Mandan, N.D., Dec. 2 Annual Convention Mandan, N.D., Dec. 2-3 Fall Management Tips Determine the ewe pregnancy rate 60 days after the start of the breeding season. Review your 2011 flock performance and identify areas for improvement. Test hay and develop a winter feedlot ration. Plan your 2012 vaccination protocol. Aborting agents will require vaccinations prior to lambing. Plan your shearing date and call your sheep shearer. Shearing 45 days prior to lambing can increase lamb birth weight, neonatal survival and weaning weight. 8

9 Sheep Management Tools Available The American Sheep Industry Association, through its Lets Grow with twoplus initiative, is helping expand sheep numbers by developing a series of universal management practices designed to assist in a number of specific areas. The management tips were developed by leading authorities in the industry and have been posted to Management Topics Making Vaccine Choices Assessing Lamb Mortality Patterns Increasing Lamb Output via Crossbreeding Benchmarks for Success Biosecurity Late Gestation/Early Lactation Ewe Nutrition Steps to Effective and Sustainable Internal Parasite Management Using Genetics to Increase Lambing Percentage NDLWPA Membership Form This form is a membership application for the North Dakota Lamb and Wool Producers Association (NDLWPA) and American Sheep Industry (ASI) Association. Please print clearly Name Street address City State ZIP Phone ( ) Fax ( ) Number of sheep/goats Please check all that apply: Commercial Purebred Club lamb Dairy Lamb feeder Shearer Allied industry Business Please check membership type: NDLWPA annual membership $20 NDLWPA annual junior membership (under 18 years of age) $5 ASI annual membership $.04/head or $25 minimum (whichever is greater) Joint NDLWPA/ASI annual membership $40 Printed copy of the ASI Weekly Newsletter $10 Note: ASI annual membership will entitle you to an copy of the ASI Weekly Newsletter. Total $ Send this application and your payment to: Please make checks payable to NDLWPA NDLWPA th St. S.E. Fullerton, ND For more information, call (701) or visit Thank you for taking an active interest in your industry! 9

10 North Dakota State University Agriculture Communication NDSU Dept P.O. Box 6050 Fargo, ND NDSU encourages you to use and share this content, but please do so under the conditions of our Creative Commons license. You may copy, distribute, transmit and adapt this work as long as you give full attribution, don t use the work for commercial purposes and share your resulting work similarly. For more information, visit North Dakota State University does not discriminate on the basis of age, color, disability, gender expression/identity, genetic information, marital status, national origin, public assistance status, sex, sexual orientation, status as a U.S. veteran, race or religion. Direct inquiries to the Vice President for Equity, Diversity and Global Outreach, 205 Old Main, (701) County Commissions, NDSU and U.S. Department of Agriculture Cooperating. This publication will be made available in alternative formats for people with disabilities upon request, (701) NDLWPA Lamb Cook-off Entry Form Name Phone ( ) Address Name of your entry Category: Adult Youth What type of cooking method? Mail, or fax your entry form by Nov. 25, 2011, to: Anne Osborne nd St. S.E. Wimbledon, ND Fax: (701) Need electricity? Yes No People s Choice tasting to be at 8 p.m. Will you participate in the People s Choice? Yes No (If yes, please bring enough for 15 servings.) For details about the contest, see article on page 7. 10

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